A few days ago, the President of the Italian Rowing Coach Association, Maurizio Ustolin, invited me to write an article about my rowing. On the surface, a simple request. And then, after some thought, I realised it was not so simple at all.
I realised that he didn’t mean a technical ‘approach’, far too easy. But a reflection of ‘what’ rowing has meant to me. What it has ‘given me’. Describing this is not so straight forward, because for me, rowing is not a ‘memory’, it was and is ‘my life’. To describe only some aspects would be to over-simplify it.
I began rowing in 1963, when I was 17. Convinced by my school friend, Gianpiero Galeazzi, to give this adventure a try, I left behind basketball and athletics. I’d been doing them more out of amusement than for the love of them. ‘My’ sport took a forceful hold of my already structured adult life. It started as an ‘add-on’ but became everything in time – even becoming my professional life. But that’s another story. We ‘racing members’ entered the club by the side door, the workman’s entrance. We weren’t allowed to Keep on reading!
I clearly remember the first time I sat on the rowing ergo. It was Monday 1st September 2014. And we all know a Monday is the perfect day to start something new.
Until that point, nobody had told me creation was divided into two broad categories. I used to distinguish people just by being male or female, unaware of the world being split into two by a simple set of scales!
The unbearable lightness of being
Before I encountered Indoor Rowing, my life was made up of drinking, bars, pizza, all-you-can-eat restaurants and of “pour me another” … Continue reading
For those of you who enjoyed the excerpt in my previous blog post in January from ‘A Year with Melissa’, the book is now available to purchase in English.
This week I received a printed copy of ‘A Year with Melissa’, now available to purchase from Amazon.com. My son, Peter is enjoying reading it with our cat, Sugar.
It’s also available to purchase as an eBook from Barnes & Noble (USD) or Kobo (GBP). If you don’t have a Kindle or similar, you can download readers from these sellers to use on phones and tablets, and even web apps.
Do you have something new you want to focus on this year? I’m not really a resolution kind of person – I feel changes can be made at any time of the year, not just on January 1st.
So I made my change a few months ago by embarking not on another rowing or cycling translation, but on the translation of a book. The departure is that it’s a collection of short stories aimed at children, but which has a philosophical slant, aiming to help all of us make sense of the modern world and make the right choices for the lifestyle we want.
Hopefully, you’ll find the stories as captivating as I did. As a taster, I’ve included a short excerpt from one of Melissa’s discussions with Mr Cat about how children learn to imitate their parents’ behaviours.
The collection of short stories will be published shortly…
Excerpt from ‘A year with Melissa’ by Marzia Bosoni
Faced with Melissa’s silence, the cat continued.
“What’s the matter now? Have I confused you?”
“No, not at all. What you say makes sense to me, but why don’t Mummy and Daddy understand?”
“You see, little one, your parents constantly tell you what you SHOULD and SHOULDN’T do, don’t they?”
Melissa nodded quickly, thinking back to all the warnings her mother had given her only a few minutes earlier.
“Your parents,” the cat went on, “heard the ‘SHOULD’ repeated so many times they ended up believing them. So, now they think they have to go to work, to earn lots of money, to buy certain things such as that noisy box that shows pictures that make no sense…”
“A year with Melissa” translated by Gillian Shaw
For more news on books by this author, go to her Facebook page
The minibus. A confined, restricted space. A meeting place of bodies and souls that generates an atmosphere like no other – it pervades all the senses. And smell more than any other. Removing yourself from its spell is difficult for young rowers looking forward with trepidation to their minibus trip. These days, journeys are marked by fingers moving across touch screens. But years ago they moved across guitar chords with the rest of the group singing songs about blond-haired, blue-eyed beauties and the like. It was also a chance to spend time with the driver. The man the rowing club had entrusted with their hopes, rowers and boats, in driving them to the regatta.
In my club, as in many others, this chap was almost always the coach. There were few resources available, and these men had so much enthusiasm and made so many sacrifices for our beloved sport. Back then, travelling in the minibus Continue reading
by Giuseppe Lamanna (translated by Gillian Shaw from the source text)
There is a tight link between rowing and cycling. They look very different but they both teach us many things, if you have the right attitude and an open mind. Both boat and bike will help you learn about balance, effort and freedom.
José Casiraghi pedalling
This is why the majority of rowers, from those like José Miguel Casiraghi in the Italian national squad, to the most average enthusiast (like me!), often use the bike as training. It isn’t just because it’s good for your quads. We learn how to live sitting on a sliding seat or saddle, one metre at a time. Because these sports have forever been Continue reading